Frequently Asked Questions
What are suspension bushings for anyway?
Suspension bushings are fitted to cars at all points where the vehicle chassis is joined to a moving suspension component. They are fitted to provide a noise and vibration absorbing barrier between the road and you.
Why are they made of rubber?
Rubber acts as that sound barrier, damping out noise and vibration. Without them cars would feel much harsher and noisier. Rubber is also very very cheap.
Do race cars have rubber bushings?
In general the answer is no. A lot of race cars, especially single seater track based cars use metal joints which do not provide any noise absorbing. The life of these joints is measured in hours. They are not suitable for road use. However a huge number of race cars still use rubber bushings. These are either production based cars adapted for race use or rally cars where the forces on the suspension can be so high that metal joints would break.
Can I fit POWERFLEX bushings to my race car?
If your race car has rubber bushings anywhere in the suspension then fitting POWERFLEX bushings will improve all aspects of it's handling. They will outlast rubber by a factor of ten. They will control the geometry much more accurately during rapid suspension movements and they will reduce tire wear.
Why not Nylon bushings?
Nylon is probably the worst of all worlds. When a suspension arm moves up and down it does not move only up and down but describes an arc. This means that, for example an inner track control arm bush will be required to flex in two dimensions at the same time. In this example a metal bush will allow this movement as will a rubber or POWERFLEX bushing. However a nylon bushing will allow up and down movement but 100% of the arc loadings will be transferred into the arm and the chassis. This causes arm flexing and can easily cause premature arm failure! Of course nylon has no vibration absorbing characteristics at all, so all vibration is transferred up the already highly stressed arm.
If POWERFLEX products are this good why do car manufacturers use rubber and not polyurethane?
Cost, availability and marketing. Polyurethane, as a raw material is about ten times the cost of rubber plus it is more expensive and slower to process. Car manufacturers buy a lot of components. If Ford decided to use polyurethane bushings in their range of cars they would need to find a supplier capable of making literally millions of bushings a year. There is no company in the world (even EPTG Ltd) who could make those sort of quantities. Cars are all about marketing. As long as the standard rubber bushings work without serious failure for two or three years then the manufacturer is happy. Would fitting of polyurethane bushings make you buy one car in preference to another make? Probably not.
Why do I need them then?
POWERFLEX bushings improve your cars' road holding and chassis performance by controlling the amount of unwanted flex in the suspension. This means your suspension is doing what it is supposed to. It means your tires have greater contact with the road at all times therefore improving safety and performance. Correctly formulated polyurethane is as good if not better at noise, vibration and harshness suppression when compared to rubber.
I only have a fairly basic sedan, why do I need high performance bushings?
For exactly the same reason as above but with a different emphasis. If your tires are in better contact with the road and your suspension movements are being controlled more accurately then tire wear will be dramatically reduced. We have letters of recommendation from customers who state that they have doubled the life of their tires on certain cars after fitting POWERFLEX bushings. We are not claiming that you will get this but worn bushings are dangerous and will be costing you money due to premature iyre wear. Have you ever taken your car into a tire shop with tires which are worn out on the inner or outer edges but perfectly legal everywhere else? You assume the tracking is wrong, but when the shop checks, it is correct. This is bushing wear. When the car is stationary the tracking is correct but as you move and the loads increase then the tracking goes out. Come to a stop and the tracking is right again. Worn bushings.
I love my car, it is a classic...What can they do for me?
Another major advantage of POWERFLEX bushings is life. Rubber is a natural product and deteriorates with age, especially on cars which are not being used regularly. The bushings will crack on the outer surface and soften inside. POWERFLEX bushings are not affected by ultra-violet, petrol, oil, battery acid, water or time. Prefect for your loved one. (And the car.)
How much do they cost?
Typically about 5 to 8 times the cost of a standard rubber bushing. However that is not the whole story. When you consider the cost of fitting new bushings and the fact that POWERFLEX will be the last bushings you every fit to your car things start to look a bit better. Then consider tire wear, a real cost saving here. Car manufacturers have a habit of not supplying the bushings on their own, only supplying them complete with suspension arms. Paying $100 for an arm when a POWERFLEX bush might cost $40 is not a good idea. And finally as cars get older manufacturers stop supplying certain parts. Imagine your car was off the road because of a bushing failure. You go to the parts shop and the part is "no longer serviced"! POWERFLEX makes a lot of sense then.
Are they easy to fit?
We design all bushings so that they can be fitted without special tools. However sometimes it is a lot harder to remove the old bushings than fit the new ones. If you feel you have very little mechanical knowledge, experience, talent or tools, either ask a friend or get them professionally fitted.
Where can I buy them?
They are distributed by a vast network of quality parts specialists all over the world. See our dealers page for a specialist near you or contact us directly.
Do I need to buy the whole car set?
No, but it depends on the car. Some cars benefit more than others. But there is a fair amount of effort involved in changing bushings so consider changing, for example a front set at one time, followed by the rear ones if applicable. Best to change the whole set if you can afford it. (But we would say that wouldn't we!)
How do I grease polyurethane bushings?
The grease supplied with Powerflex bushings, in the silver pouch, is a copper based grease. We supply this to aid fitment of the bushing and to provide necessary lubrication.
It is best to assemble our bushing kits into the suspension components using a small smear of this long last grease. This can be applied to all contact points of the bushing and any excess grease visible once assembled can easily be wiped clear.
Apply grease to all parts that touch anything but air...